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Gods, Goddesses, Nymphs, &c. as Moses had done with Men, Beasts, Fowls and Fishes. So that 'tis to me evident that the beginning of Hefod's Tbeogony is no other than a Poetical Imitation of Moses's Cosmogony, or Creation of the World.
The Fable of Saturn, as before related; may The Fable of be interpreted (1.) In a Philosopbical Sense: For Saturn exby Saturn is meant Time ; Saturn in Greek is plain'd.
The Philosopbicallid Cronos, and Time Chronos ; the difference is cal Senfe. but one Letter. Saturn devour'd his Children, so Time devours and consumes all things it has produced. Or else, the Years, Months and Days are the Children of Time, which he devours and again produces anew. Lastly, Saturn had his Scythe, so has Time wherewith he mows down all things; and Saturn's Serpent biting his Tail is a proper Emblem of the endless Circulation of Years, Ages, and other periods of Time.
Secondly, Saturn in an Historical Sense is Noab: The Historical For 'tis laid in his Time there was but one Lan-Senft ; Saturn
is Noah. guage, which was common to Men and Beasts ; so in Noab's Days the whole Earth spake but one Tongue. Saturn's Wife was Tellus, or Rbea, or Ops, all which signify the Earth : And Noah, in the Original Hebrew, is said to be a Man of tbe Earth, or an Husbandman. Saturn is said to have found the Art of cultivating Vines and Fields, and by Scripture we find Noab the first Planter of Vineyards. Again, Noah was overcome with Wine, so Saturn protected drunken Men. Noab cursed Ham for seeing his Nakedness and not hiding it; so Saturn made a Law to punish those who should look on the Gods naked. Noab and Saturn both foretold a Flood and the Building an Ark, &c. Saturn devour'd all his Son's but three ; so Noab left all the old World behind him, dead and devour'd as it were, whilst
he with his three Sons escaped with Life; with
many other parallel Cafos. The Golden, IN Saturn's Reign was the Golden Age, which Silver,
the Poets magnify the Happiness of to that DeIron Ages
gree, that they would persuade us the Earth moralized. spontaneously brought forth its Fruits without Man's
Labour ; that all things were common to all ; that there were no Quarrels nor Contentions 2mong any; but that all the Earth enjoy'd a perfect Scene of uninterrupted Ease, Peace, Saturity, and Deligbt. The Moral of which is, that in the pristine State of the World, Men's Reason, Natures, and Minners were more perfect, and conformable to the Rules of Justice and Equity; and according as this their original Moral Re&titude declined, and gradually became deprav'd and corrupted in subsequent Ages, so the Poets' on that score made the Silver, the Brazen, and the Iron Age to succeed in order ; and thereby beautifully represented the fatal Gradation from primæval Virtue to modern Vice. 'Tis supposed this excellent Fiktion took its Rise from Vebu
chadnezzar's Dream. The Historical JUPITER, according to Historians, was Meaning of King of Crete ; and having deposed his Father, and Neptune. afterwards divided the Kingdom by Lot with his
two Brothers Neptune and Pluto; and because the Eastern Part fell to Jupiter, the Wejtern to Pluto, and the Maritime to Neptune, from thence they took Occasion to feign, that Jupiter was King and God of Heaven, the Sun first rising on his Dominions; that Pluto was the Sovereign of Hell, because the Sun going beneath his Territories, left the Earth in Gloomy Darkness; Neptune also must needs be God of the Seas, whose Jurisdiktion lay
bordering upon them. Again, in a PhilosopbiThe Philosophi- cal Sense, Jupiter is taken for the Air and Hea
Sleaning ven, and therefore commands the Thunder, piter.
Lightning, Lightning, &c. Some by Jupiter understand Fate, the Stoical Cause of all Things. Others say by Jupiter is meant the Soul of the World, or that Principle which actuates the World, and renders it prolific and productive of all Things.
By Apollo is meant the Sun, as is evident, since The Fable of he was the God of Propbesy and Divination, as the Apullo exSu.. by his luminous Beams dispels Darkness, and Blain’d of the brings conceald and hidden Things to Light. Apollo presided over the Art of Medicine ; thus the Sun by its falutary and balmy Rays gives Naturd Life to all Things, and causes the plants and Herbs to grow for the purposes of Health and Medicine. Apollo's Darts are an apt Emblem of radiating Beams of Light, which the Sun as it were darts or shoots upon the Body of the Earth. Lastly, Apollo presided over Mufic; and is not the Sun the true cause of the Harinony of the Spberes? And does not his Harp of seven Strings represent the seven planetary Orbs, wherein they dance about the Sun perpetually?
By Mercury is meant the Faculty of Eloquence, The Fable of or Use of Speech ; his Name in Greek (Hérmes,) Mercury
moraliz'd; being composed of two Words, signifying to
Mercury speak. Hence he is call’d the Nuncio of the means ÉloGods, because by Speech we are able to com- quence. municate our Thoughts to others, and make our Words the Messengers of our Minds. Mercury was allow'd Wings ; fo our Words fly swiftly through the Air : He held a Golden Wand, to shew the Excellency of seasonable and friendly Admonition ; he was the Interpreter of the Gods, as Words and Language are of our Minds to one another ; he was the God of Merchandise, since all Commerce is tranfacted by means of the sociable Faculty of Speech. He conducted the Souls of the Dead to the Shades below, either to Hell or the Elysian Fields ; which shews how much a
Man's future State depends upon the Nature and Tenor of our Speech and Discourse : Thus our Lord says, By thy Words thou shalt be justified, and by iby Words thou shalt be condemn'd. He stole Vulcan's Tools, Venus's Girdle, and attempted Jupiter's Thunder; all which shew the thievish Power of Eloquence, which steals from us our very Senses, and disarins us of our Rea
son in the Attacks of Love and Sophistry. By Mars is THE Fable of Mars holds forth the Nature of moant War. War : His Countenance and Ations before re
lated are all correspondent thereto ; and all so easy to be interpreted and apply'd, that thc Fable
itself is its own Mythologit. Bacchus is BACCHUS is said by some to represent NimNimrod, or
rod, by others Mofes; there being many CircumMoses.
stances in which he may be thought to resemble
both, too tedious here to enumerate. But as to The Moral of the Moral Sense, 'tis obvious Bacchus means Wine bis Fable.
among the Poets. Thus Jupiter is said to bear Bacchus in his Thigh, and thereby to go limping; which shews how we reel to and fro, and si agger through the Influence of too much Wine, Bacchus is always a Boy, so the oldest Men when drunk are as filly as Children. Bacchus is naked; and does not Wine divest Men of their Reason, and make them lay open all the Secrets of their Minds and Bodies too? Bacchus has Horns ; and how many does Wine occasion to be crown'd with those Enfigns of Cuckoldom? Bacchus wis inflam'd with the Love of Venus and Ariadne ; thus U’ine is a never-failing Provocative to Venery and Debauchery; besides abundance of other
parallel Cafes. By Juno is By Juno, the Confort of Jove, is meant the zeant tbe Air. Air : She was both Sister and Wife to Yufiter ;
so the Air was produced at the same Time as the Sky, and was closely conjoin'd therewith. And
don and Vise tu'.
by the Commixture of the Influences of the Hea-
That Venus is the Emblem of Love is weil The Fable of known; the Manner of her Birth declares her to Venus mora. be carral Lif; her Companions fnew the wanton zd.